Thursday, December 30, 2010

Heaven

By Ian McIntosh


Mercy like a blanket warms my every breath
My anticipation has faded
All my striving comes undone
You are God who sits on the throne

(He reigns)

My every heartbeat catches in my chest
how can I not declare your works
You are just and fair God
Your grace has no end
You are God who sits on the throne

Sunday, December 26, 2010

See

Fed a diet of images, what does one see?


War, nudes, unrest, action, empty scenes filled with...stillness. Events, people, persons, preoccupation, inkling of moments to snap.

The art of seeing, a journey in vision. Changing technology, shifting frames, moving horizons. Yielding shot after shot of personal sights and visual songs.

Learn to see life and the likeness therein and the limberness thereof.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Light in the dark

A man steeped in self-doubt and near depression finds newfound faith in himself, revived purpose, a new direction and well, changed writing.

Frightened of poverty, now weighed by family financial burdens, he looks to what brings him cheer and happiness--that is, family, sharing and giving love and abundance in the house.

Now the darkness didn't seem so dark after all. A solution, maybe obvious, comes of one's own hands and abilities. Success came knocking as he simply did what he loved.

Read the story of how Charles Dickens found hope and inspiration as he rushed to write his ever loved tale, A Christmas Carol.

Success has its way of finding itself on one's doorstep, whatever the circumstances.

May you reach out to open the door just in time.

Of Volunteers and Passion

What's the difference between a volunteer and a full-time worker? Between one who offers his/her free time and energies and one who is paid for his time and energies?

Let's just say if both do the same work, invest the same effort, put in the same hours, showing the same degree of interest. So what's the difference?

I'm sure you can easily rattle off reasons like how a paid worker is a dedicated resource who's trained and expected to perform and contractual terms are also in place to ensure stability and continuity over time.

Does the difference lie in the assurance we have that the paid worker can perform because of his specialised skills and experience? Whereas a volunteer isn't as effective?

Well, hypothetically speaking, a volunteer can be trained to be effective. And a volunteer is generally expected to be able to perform and we can't always be making excuses for anything less than acceptable.

After a night of sleeping on the couch and 2 hours of ploughing through photos on the computer, I don't have the full answer. But I think herein lies the difference: It's really not about whether being full-time or not, it's the degree of passion and the extent of rootedness you have.

Why do we give of ourselves? What have we been giving of ourselves to? Would we continue to give of ourselves?

Look back and look beyond. The road ahead will surely be new and yet it will somehow look familiar.

Cheers to a better 2011.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Purpose and power

When passion, talent and service collide, a potent mix results. Passion that fires you up, keeps you going, makes you want to improve, cheers you on.


Talent is what you're gifted to do. Possibly even just a small ability at the right moment makes a great difference.

Service in contribution of greater purpose. No doubt, labour and sweat are involved. Stepping out to serve others with little benefit to self.

Simple yet powerful when the right mix comes together. Can you help someone find this mix today?

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The Fullness

By Lovelite


VERSE 1
Here I am safe at last
In Your arms and in Your hands
My body's weak but You are stronger You will carry me

CHORUS
Because You
offer a life that is whole
You brighten my darkened soul
A mystery that I long to know
I am Yours

VERSE 2
Here I am full of hope
Not weighed down anymore
Knowing You changes me
Never let me leave

INSTRUMENTAL

Monday, December 20, 2010

Wishes, Goals and Resolutions

The year trots to an end. New resolutions are bubbling. Easy to set, fun to write, how hard do you/I want them to come to pass?


One thing I really want to change: To think positively and have an attitude of a change-maker. Talking to self, internal dialogue--it's extremely pivotal, the things you dwell and meditate upon, that is, reinforcing in the mind.

A friend blogged that often we set goals instead of making true resolutions. It's easy, too easy to write lofty goals down.

It's not just a wishlist which suggests passive acceptance of fate. It's not an empty confession of possibilities.

What makes the difference between fluffy stuff and reality? What's the price to pay, the labour of focus and resolve?

Say yes. Say let it be. Say I will.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Homely sights

Neighbour's pink bougainvillea perched on the sill, silhouetted in light from without, wavering in the breeze.


Dad finally looking up from newspaper classifieds after I repeat myself. Glasses on nose, pen in hand, notepad on kitchen table.

Mom sewing on the living room sofa in front of the window. Glasses at the end of her nose. Intent yet enjoying her weekly blast of dong fang Billy.

Bro still on his bed at 11.35am. Mobile in hand, pillow in arm, he looks at me as I pass his room. The singlet-tan he got from the marathon still visible.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Love Is

What is love? Is it a feeling? Is it a choice? Is it acceptance? Is it commitment?

What makes one love others? Ephesians 5 tells me it begins when Christ's love is experienced in our lives.

Everyone's different. Every piece unique. Probably already knew that but fitting together takes...a heart with capacity for others.

Motivation? Surely not for one's benefit because others can see and sense that. What then?

What is love? Go figure. Go experience it. Go tell it on the mountain. Go give it. Go.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Manifesto

By The City Harmonic

Monday, December 13, 2010

Seeing is believing

What you see is what affects you. The images, behaviours, outcomes, emails, smiles, dressing, conditions, speed of replies...they shape and mould consciously and conjuredly.

What are you showing? Visual language communicates what goes unspoken. One's underlying condition, strength, tenacity.

Numbers speak, we know that. Performance records, appraisals, achievement reports.

Like Jacob and his goats, the splendour of Solomon's palace, the growth and dedication through the years...seeing is believing.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Friday, December 10, 2010

To grieve with those who grieve

Losing a part of self, when routines, loves and favourites become meaningless and painful, finding something to occupy your mind.

I've not lost a close one before. I shouldn't know.

Where do you find comfort? In music, in moving, in movies or...

When it wells up within, who do you tell?

Dwell in the shelter, you want to. Dwell in sleep, you wish.

Monday, December 06, 2010

While running

Got this quote in my email today:
Thank God for running. It is the ultimate detox for me, whether my poison is bubbles, a foul mood, or a bad attitude. If I combat inertia, get out, and get moving, eventually every kind of toxin works its way out.
~Kristin Armstrong, Author and runner

I can run without an MP3 player for long distances because thoughts and songs occupy me when I run. Sometimes my thoughts are clarified and resolved. Once after a 30min jog, I decided to attend cell group meeting. During yesterday's run, I thought about how manhood is a choice. Once I felt terrible after a run.

Running while thinking. Our soul needs to get out. Fresh air (exhaust fumes notwithstanding), nice scenery, new terrain, fellow runners though strangers...I guess this is solitude. Get away from deadlines, tasks, email, people...noise in general.

I like to run. I like to think. Yet I also acknowledge that alone, I won't find the peer challenge and the peer wisdom to get better. That's why it's high time to find running buddies who run like you, keep pace with you, train with you...does this mean I lose the solo runs? Doubt it.

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Thoughts over 5h05m plod

  • Pre-race start, waiting for bro to deposit his bag. Where is he?? Must have gone ahead without me. Here I go.

  • 5.30am. Late start. Nice running down Orchard road under christmas lighting.

  • Not wearing specs--where are we??

  • It's blue everywhere. I see running buddies, couples, a few guys with funny gait...everyone looks young, lean and well, fit for running.

  • "those who wait on the LORD...They shall mount up with wings like eagles..."

  • Picture eagle soaring. Within.

  • Still picturing eagle.

  • Ooh, new east coast scenery :)

  • Some girl cheers from the side, "Keep going! Keep going!"

  • What a silent run in my mind. No song in my jukebox within. Suddenly Captivated starts to play. Followed by Shine Like Stars a la reggae beat, for some distance.

  • 13km to go! Last quarter leg to go. Can I clock 4h30m? Keep the pace. Picture eagle.

  • I run because I choose to. Not because I have to.

  • Throat and nose didn't act up this morning. Quietly thank God under breath.

  • Why am I torturing myself? Time to find new pastime...

  • Left thigh cramp. Urgh. Help!

  • I run because I can. So is this a good idea? I'm running today because He prompted me not to fall out. Definitely God's idea.

  • Walk. Jog. Walk. Jog. Walk. Dizzy. Jog. Walk. Dizzy. Shuffle uphill. Yay!

  • Final 2km! "I press on!"

  • Clocked 5h05m! Sugar low moment--dazed & vision's blurred. Sit down for 5min. Nice race official makes sure I'm ok.

  • Home-bound.

Saturday, December 04, 2010

Brace yourselves!

Friday, December 03, 2010

Don't shrug

Day is over,
somewhat worn.
See tomorrow,
bright and morn.
Race on, race hard,
race to be.
Life aplenty,
time is not.
Words, choice,
song, poise.
Make it count,
make it count,
make it count.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Being a worship band

Chris Llwellyn of Rend Collective Experiment guest-blogs this:


On their band name:
"The 'experiment' in our band name refers to the fact that we don't have all the answers and are still working things out..."

On key elements of their album title

"Organic:
We think that the only songs worth writing are born out of authentic,natural connection with God."

"Family:
We share life together-eating meals, helping each other out financially, sharing our homes, talking each other through girl trouble(!) etc."

"Hymnal:
Our songs are meant for inclusion in the 21st century church hymnal..."

Read the full guest-blog here.

Cultural shift

What does it to change people and how they behave? The use of words, outlook and world view, the things they do, the things they don't do...all the intangibles that make tangible impact.


What is the outcome? How to get there? What can we achieve? Now it is both an art and a science to effect a cultural shift.

There are some who learn through observation and simply catch what is unsaid. Like witnessing the act of someone responding immediately to loud booming sounds that bear signs of danger. Are these folks rare?

We become the environment that we are soaked into. There is safety, there is comfort and each assumes the default mode in doing "the usual"...

So how we do effect change? It definitely takes intentional, persistent and pre-planned effort to do so.

Where do we want to go? What do we want to be? How do individuals answer this collective question?

Monday, November 29, 2010

Pal

Every hero needs a buddy, someone to call as back-up. Got this from Spider Man 3.


A superhero might try going it alone but when the villains get too powerful for you, man, you need a super pal!

Someone who knows what you're like, who knows what and who you like, who knows how to work with you. Tag team's the best! :)

Saturday, November 27, 2010

bulb

By Ryohei Yoshiyuki

Thursday, November 25, 2010

My Only

By John Mark McMillan

All day long
We are sinking just like stones
Into the shadow of your kindness
In this shade
Between the wingspan of your face is
The only place
Where we can bed these burdens down
so I

Lift my eyes up to the hills
Who is gonna help me now

You're my only
You're my only
You're my only hope

Tangled up
In the great ridiculous
Way you love
it is the only way to live
There's no escape
When you look at me that way
Staring like a deer into the headlights of your praises

Lift my eyes up to the hills
Who is gonna help me now

You're my only
You're my only
You're my only hope
You're my only
You're my only
You're my only hope

And you come like the sun
With pockets full of redemption
And you come
With the sun
With the sun

And you come like the sun
With pockets full of redemption
And you come
With the sun
With the sun

With the sun
With the sun
With the sun
With the sun
With the sun
With the sun

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Health and wealth

It's been on my mind how fragile our human bodies are. I hear story after story of how colleagues or their loved ones struggle with illnesses and physical conditions that hamper their lives and also affect the ones around them.

Then there are some accounts of healing, surely divine, that encourage. Like one who underwent chemo to rid a growth in her brain. And another who bounced back after her womb was removed.

And there are those who have lost limbs and mobility. Yet they persist in living life normally (can you call finishing a vertical marathon normal?) and victoriously.

Focus on the frailty of organic life and surely despair will set in. Face the certainty of death and hopelessness overwhelms.

Well...you and I are not God. Did you forget how would we know the answers and the way ahead?

Are we given to live in fear and worry and anxiety and tears and negative talk?

What's the alternative?

Health and wealth. They begin in the spirit.

How do you want to live today?

Monday, November 22, 2010

Snap

Have you ever looked into photos and seen the belying sadness of the guy who pictured them?


Where's the soul been trapped all this while? Where's the folly of it all?

Feedback is not a sound. It is the reactions you bring out from those you reveal yourself to.

Living to express yourself vs. finding yourself through others... In life's journey, your interests morph and your view shifts.

Timelessness. Restlessness. Desire to settle.

Look out before life and lives pass you by.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Pursuit of hope

If you had absolute power, would you share it with others?


If you could, would you endeavour to better the lives of people?

Pain and sadness need no language to be felt.

Hope is like the sun and having it is like keeping your eyes open. Where hope and desire persist, would you follow after, no matter the distance?

For men and women, each lives the same purpose and lifespan to survive. And the same childhood innocence and human will pervade. Yet circumstances and pursuits differ.

This rendition haunts. Their condition mourns. Those tears foreign but no doubt real.

Choose life, choose "will" and choose to dream.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Good things must share

A friend is someone you can tell truthful things about yourself without worrying wat they think.

A brother is someone who keeps going with you, especially when you feel like giving up.

Words are like a mirror reflecting your own self, revealing...well, you.

Who can you sit comfortably with for more than four hours and just talk? Hang on to that connection. Because in this world of shallow smiles where trust is a falling currency, you want such moments, more than you realise you actually need.

Perhaps just as He says, I am God, trust Me...I am friend, trust me.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Don't label me

Don't label me a thinker because I ask why.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

When you feel like giving up

When you feel like giving up...now what exactly are you giving up?

When you ask why this and why that, what exactly are you questioning?

Now, spirituality isn't birthed in a 30-min quiet time or a goosebump-inducing revelation moment.

Tethered at your roots, who's your source? In winter's deep, what's keeping you grounded?

When you close your eyes, what do you see? What picture of the future do you see?

Friday, November 12, 2010

Details determine destiny

Forewarned by my previous director, I set about my perfectionist streak to be as detailed and determined as I could. Thankfully some things that were unclear even a week before simply fell into place.

Set in motion by a good intention and a positive attitude--and a good reputation--the build-up leading to the actual event was just marvellous. I'm grateful for a responsive and responsible collective team of confident and "can-do" people.

The dust ain't settled though. Documentation, doggedly digging for a firm solution ahead, and determining to do what's right... One's To-Do list abounds and never clears.

What else gives?

What's it like to shout what you think should deserve an energetic response return nary an echo? In this world of electronic pings and pokes, silence is not heard because collateral noise covers up almost immediately. Kinda like a 7-second memory, or maybe...never mind.

Worth, value and reward. What drives you? I'm not talking about goals but your inner belief and idea of who and how you and your life's work will be deemed.

Not yet, not now, not...me.

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Running

At which point do you stop running and you face up to your fears barking and coming after you?

Just when you thought it was about to end and they are kept at bay, they turn and (actually expectedly) bound after you.

SSHHH is all you manage in the dead of the night.

Running away and filling your days with busy-ness. To the point the void you've been feeling all along can no longer stay void.

It's simplistic but is love and friendship really the goodie powerful all-be-it that separates the ultimate winner and hero?

Don't answer.

Two are better than one. I've said that. Faced back to back, the fears don't disappear but at least you've got backup.

Saturday, November 06, 2010

Snapping

Words elude photography. Documenting scenes and people as-is. Drawing out the inner person to the fore, sometimes to do the unusual and comical.

Clothes or san clothes, it exposes and captures that quality of being in each. Technical challenges abound until you learn to master and control the medium you work with.

What separates art from...Alright, let's not go there.

What would it look like if I could snap a picture of Zaccheus perched on a tree? What would it look like if I snapped a picture of Joshua, his priests and men and the Ark circling the city?

Friday, November 05, 2010

Light Up The Sky

The Afters

Thursday, November 04, 2010

Feedback


From Scott Brignac

Monday, November 01, 2010

Exhaustion

Why do we burn out when we burn out?

Placing our hope in the wrong thing, despairing that our situation is hopeless, flitting towards what should be bane...

What gives??

Walking through life, what is the one thing we can place our trust and hope in? Is faith always blind? Must I see it to have it?

Maybe you should keep your answers to yourself because each cross is for each to bear.

Drop it or face it. Endure it or deal with it.

Don't just keep at it but brandish what you're good at, savour what you enjoy, tweak how you've been doing things.

Discomfort is not dysfunction. So go burn yourself to a crisp. You'll discover more of yourself. Sorta.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Thinkering

Can a bird experience vertigo? All that swooping should cause some serious swooning right? Or so my two-legged groundedness wanders.

The door to promotion opens when you're perfectly unaware that you've done perfectly fine. While ambition, from young, is uncovered in serendipitous moments. Try seeing the world differently with childish wide-eyed wonder...

What are you doing for your soul today? The human soul is made for living. For longing and fulfilment which the lack thereof would surely lead to...death. That is, the absence of life, devoid of living. In trying so hard to live maximised lives, are we leaving void the core of our being?

If we don't conform, are we isolating and distancing the self? Are we subconsciously walling the self in and others without?

Imagine

Solipsism: The belief that all reality is just one's own imagining of reality, and that one's self is the only thing that exists.

Friday, October 29, 2010

In you

In a world where everything is transient, what gives you anchor?


In circles where others are living hand to mouth, how does that affect how you spend?

In life where things get thrown at you, do you take it as it comes or do you stay true to your course?

In asking, are you waiting for answers or are the answers waiting for you?

Monday, October 25, 2010

Intentionality

Take-away's and rake-a-way's:

What's the outcome that really matters at the end?

Ephemeral as each moment seems, it is intentionality that surfaces clarity.

Ideas are plenty, talk is cheap but it is focused, organised efforts that shape outputs.

One man's banality, another man's object of beauty. One man's necessity, another's wisp of being.

So who died and made you arbiter?

Design is the signature of intelligence; function is the expression of vision.

Be intentional. Be faithful to your sense and DNA.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

20 minutes of light



German-born Katrin Koenning, a Melbourne-based photographer creates her mise-en-scène in the series "Thirteen: Twenty Lacuna". Attracted to the sunlight as it appears for just 20 minutes on a street in downtown Melbourne Katrin observes the passers-by as they appear out of the shadows. Listening to their ipods or rushing to a meeting, each protagonist enters the spotlight on the stage unaware of their role in Koenning's drama of light and dark.

Read about 20 minutes of light here at BBC.

View her work here.

Snippet of an interview with Koenning:

Where do you get your inspiration from?

From anything and everything - sights, smells, moments, sentences (or even single words), my partner, silence, rainy days, the ocean, light...and certainly from music.

How you would you like to be remembered?

As someone with a burning passion.

Just The Way You Are

Smiling the world away

You send an sms asking How's everything. No reply ensues till now.


You receive an sms asking How've you been. No reply ensuing, for now.

Smile and the world smiles with you. So what's beneath that smile of yours?

Legitimate, lascivious, longing, languishing, lampooning... Languorously long night it's been.

Living to be someone. Living to be someone else. That's two different things, ain't it?

Friday, October 22, 2010

Through the hazy looking glass

What does it mean to lead? Can a man live without dreaming? How can we make a difference? When is the right time anyway?

Passion, conviction and the ability to dream. Ingredients of a life well-lived?

Who is qualified enough? What talents are requisite? Is faithfulness enough? Are we the result and product of all our wants and desires?

Predictability amidst uncertainty. Grey and hazy, set against dark and cold.

What do you want? What would you give up? What would keep you going? What would make you smile?

Smile *eeeeee*

Just smile. Think good, positive and beautiful.

Proactively engage. Purposefully build. Ponderously presume.

Precious, peculiar and powerful. You know what it is?

*eeeeeeeeee*

Saturday, October 16, 2010

What is grace?

"Cheap grace is the enemy of the church. It means forgiveness of sins proclaimed as a general truth... an intellectual assent to that idea is held to be itself sufficient to secure remission of sins. Cheap grace is the preaching of forgiveness without requiring repentance... grace without discipleship, grace without a cross... Costly grace is the gospel (of the church)... It is costly because it costs a man his life, and grace because it gives a man the only true life. It is costly because it condemns sin and grace because it justifies the sinner. Above all, it is costly because it cost God the life of his son... it is grace because God did not reckon his Son too dear a price to pay for our life. Costly grace is the Incarnation of God... When Christ calls a man, He bids him come and die. That is why the rich young man was so loath to follow Jesus, for the cost of his following was the death of his will. In fact, every command of Jesus is a call to die, with all our affections and lusts." ~ Dietrich Bonhoeffer (from Logan's worship blog)

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Ode to nowhere

Have you wanted to let loose, let go and let fly?

When was the last time you went free-spirited, pursuing your heart's desire, unbound by rules, regulations, practicalities and what nots?

Life didn't start in a box and its not gonna end in a box.

Splashes of color, gripful of nylon strings and flashes of light, dare to try and dare to get callused while finding your style.

Quit griping, quit mincing...Get going already!

You're chosen to succeed, dare you believe it.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Stroll among the giants

Thoughts as I walk through botanic gardens in mid-morning:

I saw a tree whose limb growing long sideways needed 2 posts to prop it up. So nice of its tenders not to amputate. After all, trees naturally grow sideways and not upwards. Gives it more character and figure.

Can a tree grow too big for its own good? How big can a tree grow anyway? As tall as its roots are deep, one would say. Some of these seem like a good 7 storeys high! Some buttress roots alone are big enough to fill a small room! Though we can't see them but surely those roots dig deep down.

One big tree on the green (gee, they are all on the green aren't they) had some branches culled. If this wasn't so, I wonder if the tree might collapse. On the whole, it was big and magnificent, the centre of attention. Another had knobbly roots that crawled towards the pavement. Another's crown was nearer the top like a giant cabbage.

Where do trees find nourishment from? For sure, they don't worry about the weather or nutrients in the soil or whether their branch looks lopsided. They just leaf, flower, bear fruits, shade and give restless butts temporary relief--and simply keep growing. It takes years and decades and centuries but God willing, that tree, this tree, these trees will no doubt spring up into majestic works of nature.

Surely no one sees all this happening. Not even the cicadas whose steady chorus never seems to end.

Who knows what trees we'll see in heaven?

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Morning

Fresh new morning cool.
Rhythmic seasoned hawkering.
Smells that warm and linger.
The old hold fort, the young where to?
To home I go, back to
solace, peace and kin.

Saturday, October 09, 2010

Pressing In

When do we press in?

God's pressed into your life, isn't He? In fact, He's IN your life.

Or is He?

Who takes the initiative?

Like a lovers' dance, an intimate embrace, an attempt to soar, a kite that wants to fly, there is first a stepping out, a catching of the breeze, a desire.

There is no music without depressing of keys. There is no melody sung without intake of breath.

So what's the purpose, the task and the work set out?

Waste not, wait not and want not.

Be mature and not a babe from today.

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

What makes you happy?

Have your best year yet, Enjoy your day, Keep rocking, Lotsa breakthroughs... Birthday wishes were sure gushing in many-ly on Facebook (gone are the days of birthday cards...)

Been a fulfilling day of not so much good food but simply great company. Was at work today instead of taking the day off. Lunched with colleagues and we laughed plenty over jokes and jabs. Dined with friends and we laughed over lame jokes and jabs. Am glad for friends (must remember to remember my friends).

Got home to family who prayed for me and walloped the cakes in minutes! We're a simple family with simple ways and simple faith (most of us, at least).

Found out yesterday that a colleague who's young, single and spunky finally returned from a 2-month break which she spent backpacking through South America. Beyond the guts, it's certainly a real luxury (not cheap!) but what's more, how can anyone drop and go? How can I bear that others are bearing the burden for me? Or am I wrong to think this way?

A leader has to take criticism, said someone to me recently. Who's a leader? What makes a leader? Does it matter whether he's labelled a leader? What does it mean to lead? For sure, it's not only about vision and directing skills, but also having the capacity for a heart that cares...that focuses on the persons of the people. What is it that makes people run for a leader, love him, rally after him, defend him, give their best for him?

Oh btw, happy birthday to self.

Monday, October 04, 2010

Energy

New colleague came on board team today. Kept me busy with introducing him to rest of department staff and then a long briefing on work portfolio--only part one done, part deux continues tomorrow. Note to self: Gotta aim to be organised and clear on intent and take-aways.

Thought of the day:
You get what you say. You say what you want. You want what you pray. You pray what you believe. You believe what you say.

So...what do I want?

Sunday, October 03, 2010

Where do we go from here?

Closing paragraph from "The Reason For God" by Timothy Keller:

"During a dark time in her life, a woman in my congregation complained that she prayed over and over, 'God, help me find you,' but had got nowhere. A Christian friend suggested to her that she might change her prayer to, 'God, come and find me. After all, you are the Good Shepherd who goes looking for the lost sheep.' She concluded when she was recounting this to me, 'The only reason I can tell you this story is--he did.'"

One's faith--one that saves--is born not of the good deeds or gracious behaviour or respectable position all earned and developed through self and labour. But really and simply a trust and giving of self to the Divine that is built upon a deep realisation of how weak and...human we are.

It's not what you can do or have done, but what He's done, why He did it, and will still do in your life and mine.

Receive it and pass it on. That's how the moment started.

Friday, October 01, 2010

Still, Small and Hidden

Winter Snow
by Audrey Assad


Could've come like a mighty storm
With all the strength of a hurricane
You could've come like a forest fire
With the power of heaven in Your flame

But You came like a winter snow
Quiet and soft and slow
Falling from the sky in the night
To the earth below

You could've swept in like a tidal wave
Or an ocean to ravish our hearts
You could have come through like a roaring flood
To wipe away the things we've scarred

But You came like a winter snow
(Yes, You did)
You were quiet
You were soft and slow
Falling from the sky in the night
To the earth below

Oh, no, Your voice wasn't in a bush burning
No, Your voice wasn't in a rushing wind
It was still
It was small
It was hidden

You came like a winter snow
Quiet and soft and slow
Falling from the sky in the night
To the earth below

Falling
To the earth below
You came falling
From the sky in the night
To the earth below

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Into The Wind

Steve Nash's documentary on Terry Fox



From Fast Company: As a boy growing in Western Canada, Nash followed the remarkable story of Fox, a fellow British Columbian, who, after losing his leg to cancer as a 20-year-old college basketball player, set out in 1980 to run the length of Canada to raise money for cancer research. Fox’s Marathon of Hope required him to run a marathon or more a day on his prosthesis, and became daily front-page news throughout the country.

When I spent time with Nash in Vancouver late last year, he and Ezra Holland, his cousin, co-director and co-founder of production company Meathawk, were hard at work editing. In between playing a Phoenix Suns pre-season game and making various appearances, Nash talked excitedly about the film shoot that summer and showed me footage on his iPhone.

“I got to drive the van!” he gushed at one point. He meant Fox’s van, a sacred vehicle in Canada.

Read rest of article here.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Fade With Our Voices

Incandescent

See the passing beauty in the everyday. Flash of color, the sun going away. Look without, draw within. The Well within.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Going

Fleeting

Passing

Through

Moving

Turning

Look

Grasping

Gasping

Look

Stripped

Hankering

Devoid

Up

Goes

Filling

Giving

Worship

Your

Sigh

Exchange

On

On

On

...

Still on?

Only

Not

One

Sunday, September 26, 2010

You Have Me

By Gungor

Out on the farthest edge
There in the silence
You were there
My faith was torn to shreds
Heart in the balance
But You were there
Always faithful
Always good
You still have me
You still have my heart
I thought I had seen the end
Everything broken
But You were there
I've wandered in Heaven's gates
I've made my bed in Hell
You were there still
You have me
You have me
You have my heart completely

Friday, September 24, 2010

Of Leaders And Men

It's easy to criticise leadership. In fact, it's tempting and kind of self-gratifying to notice and highlight observations of what seems like flaws and anything less becoming and inspiring. Question is, would I do better if in their shoes?

That said--like my colleague said--hang on to your ideals! There are times and there's a season for change, I believe.

Why are things the way they are? What can leaders do to inspire followership (new word!). What does it mean to renew from within? If we--I--a la Washingon, feel more like a farmer than the first general and president, what should drive us and motivate us? Do we see the big picture? Can we handle the big picture? Like real biiiiiiig??

Remembered this from a few nights ago: nobody likes to work with a driver, that is, a slave driver! Men--me--need our leaders to know us, empathise with us, appreciate us... It's so easy to rattle on. So...are you--I--living it?

If you're a leader, lead with your heart (heard during this afternoon's farewell speech). If you're a follower? Well, do as your heart guides, I guess.

Be a leader.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Stirring

Morning mist veils the land. She stirs, she smiles as the sky lights upon her. Her sun peeking through, causing the clouds to glow. This widening glory, this brightening chorus, nature's introduction...all for His--ours too--pleasure and enjoyment.

Love to See

Be Thou my vision, O Lord of my heart;
Naught be all else to me, save that Thou art.
Thou my best thought, by day or by night,
Waking or sleeping, Thy presence my light.

Be Thou my Wisdom, Thou my true Word;
I ever with Thee, Thou with me, Lord;
Thou my great Father, I thy true son;
Thou in me dwelling, and I with Thee one.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Of tides, memories and sandcastles

I remember playing on the beach when I was young. I remember taking the plastic baking spatula from the kitchen and it being scratched from digging in the sand. I don't remember my aunts or my mom chiding me for it, though they still remember it. What memories do you have and hold?

What is home, truly? What does it mean to work, to slave, to give your hard-earned money to loved ones, needy ones or...?

Back-of-my-mind worries. Of growing old, growing old just like that, with nothing to show for it? For that matter, my grams have nary the valuable assets under their name--scratch that, they had twelve wonderful children of whom one spawned yours truly.

The day ends, another begins. Duties, obligations, responsibilities...the naught.

Here's to the new day. No really, a new day, bringing new energies and a very needed new perspective. Amen.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

I want to soar

Wonder when I go swiftly through the skies, touch the clouds, survey the land and holler where nobody can hear?

Wonder when I can find someone(s) to play catch with?

Wonder what would I write within my three circles of expertness, passion & rewards?

Jump. Leap. Soar. Fly. Drift. Glide. Circle. Circle some more. Fly off-screen...

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Vision Like Oxygen

Day wanes
Clouds tinged orange
Weekend draws to close
Heart is full of peace

Go where?
Left foot aches
Mind can't but ask
How far more to run?

Breeze cools
Tummy wakes
Seven thirty
Mommy cooked at home

New day
Vision same
Goals narrowed down
Look up to Heaven

Failures...
Victories...
Full of stories...
These thoughts and purpose

Whom have I in Heaven but You?

Friday, September 10, 2010

Chicago

By Sufjan Stevens

Thursday, September 09, 2010

View out behind

Please Be My Strength

By Michael Gungor Band

I've tried to stand my ground
I've tried to understand
But I can't seem to find
My faith again

Like water on the sand
Or grasping at the wind
I keep on falling short

So please be my strength
Please be my strength
'Cause I don't have any more
I don't have any more

I'm looking for a place
Where I can plant my faith
One thing I know for sure

I cannot create it
And I cannot sustain it
It's Your love
That's keeping me

Please be my strength
Please be my strength
I don't have any more
I don't have any more

And at my final breath
I hope that I can say
I fought the good fight
Of faith

I pray your glory shines
This doubting heart of mine
And all would know that You

You are my strength
You are my strength
You and You alone
You keep bringing me back home

Oh, You are my strength
You are my strength
You and You alone
Keep bringing me back home

It's You and You alone
Bringing me back home

Sunday, September 05, 2010

Smile...

Smile, though your heart is aching
Smile, even though it's breaking
When there are clouds in the sky
You'll get by...
If you smile
With your fear and sorrow
Smile and maybe tomorrow
You'll find that life is still worthwhile if you'll just...
Light up your face with gladness
Hide every trace of sadness
Although a tear may be ever so near
That's the time you must keep on trying
Smile, what's the use of crying
You'll find that life is still worthwhile
If you'll just...
Smile, though your heart is aching
Smile, even though it's breaking
When there are clouds in the sky
You'll get by...
If you smile
Through your fear and sorrow
Smile and maybe tomorrow
You'll find that life is still worthwhile
If you'll just Smile...
That's the time you must keep on trying
Smile, what's the use of crying
You'll find that life is still worthwhile
If you'll just Smile

(by Charlie Chaplin)

Friday, September 03, 2010

Hurt

By Johnny Cash (1932 - 2003)

Thursday, September 02, 2010

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Friday, August 20, 2010

Miles David - Kind of Blue (1959)



Trumpeter Chris Botti says he was drawn to "Kind of Blue" as a high school student in Oregon in the '70s, and features "Flamenco Sketches" in his repertoire, including it on his latest CD/DVD, "In Boston."

"It's a jazz song but the chords are just so open ... and it's incredibly satisfying to play," said Botti.

"Jazz musicians are never known for their restraint and this record is perfect in its restraint. I believe this record is more of a pop album than a jazz album. ... Miles didn't have a hit song, he had a hit mood."

Read MSNBC article on "Kind of Blue" turning 50.

Explain Inception visually...

See winning infographic from Inception contest.



Here's the runner-up:

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

A hungry man is a hungry man

Me? Work my word magic??

Haven't been blogging. Possibly because Twitter & Facebook have provided quick reprieve. But mostly because spare time and coherent ideas are few.

Heroes of Faith (the campaign) has kept me busy and sleepless and hungry and restless from lack of exercise. The urge to complete tasks properly is over-riding--from retail copywriting to charting marketing ideas to pondering about project hurdles.

My latest thought, revelation if you like: Meaningful life does not equal perpetual busy-ness with work, leaving little time for other pursuits. Surely some disagree. Passion is in the pursuit, they say! Yeah, tell that to your neglected friends and God you'll meet in heaven.

So what keeps me going? I dunno...a high degree of responsibility? A conviction to do my utmost? Lack of social life?

Communication is life, so I've tweeted. My BlackBerry (which I'm posting through at this very moment) has changed how I communicate and stay plugged in. Surely novelty loses its sheen, yet emails/sms/BBMs/tweets/FB updates all continue to chirp incessantly throughout the day. It calls, it pulls...beckons & beguiles... Regrets I've not, but rather awareness of the potential giddying pace of life without.

Life, love, live, learn, linger, longing...

Been plugging in to Dr Bernard's recent messages on growth, renewal and core values. What does growth & development mean to you? Should we be contented where we are? Is it possible to balance that fine line between being achievement-driven and accepting of self?

Asking questions--the right ones. Posing questions that are sometimes rhetoric, sometimes not immediately answerable. What is your/my intent?

Life and death lie in words and their power to make and unmake. What power we have at the tip of our tongues and pens and keypads, yet how abused or under-utilised it really is.

What future do you see for yourself? Be brave, be bold, be brilliantly you.

Sunday, July 04, 2010

信者得愛

By 鄭秀文 Sammi Cheng feat. MC仁

Monday, June 28, 2010

I Shouldn't Be Awake


^^ Sky above Kampung Ubi at 0550h

With 1hr to go before I "wake up", I really ought to be in bed. Have not been blogging so perhaps this is my mid-year burst of fire.

That's right, 187days left in this year. If this is my best year yet, what has yet to be accomplished??? That goes for you too!!

On a separate note, receiving unexpected notes of concern & well-wishes via sms was certainly encouraging & heartwarming... Send someone a note of concern today, who knows what comfort and open doors it might bring :)

So, with my "new-born" camera and new prime lens to boot, I wonder what new sights I'll get to capture. Ah, Ed, that's where you should wonder no more and just go and shoot some.

And here I go. Yes Sir-ree!!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Sandcastle (2010)

Thursday, June 10, 2010

What's sad?

Friday, May 14, 2010

So Long Self

By Mercy Me



Well if I come across a little bit distant
It's just because I am
Things just seem to feel a little bit different
You understand
Believe it or not but life is not apparently
About me anyways
But I have met the One who really is worthy
So let me say

So long, self
Well, it's been fun, but I have found somebody else
So long, self
There's just no room for two
So you are gonna have to move
So long, self
Don't take this wrong but you are wrong for me, farewell
Oh well, goodbye, don't cry
So long, self

Stop right there because I know what you're thinking
But no we can't be friends
And even though I know your heart is breaking
This has to end
And come to think of it the blame for all of this
Simply falls on me
For wanting something more in life than all of this
Can't you see

Don't feel so bad (don't feel so bad)
There'll be better days (there'll be better days)
Don't go away mad (but by all means)
Just go away, go away

Saturday, May 08, 2010

Craving for love?



We're designed to love and be loved--be it good love or bad love. A simple principle oft neglect. Each seeks out love to meet needs...what if those remain unmet since little?

That's the stuff of relationships that might go awry, of pain--unnecessary if we had just known, untold because it's unconscious-- and of life patterns that persist.

WHO or WHAT can meet that deep craving for love? WHO or WHAT can mend the wounds that go unhealed? WHO or WHAT would care enough to...care?

Love is, love has, and love always will love.

Be loved.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

What do you see?

Seated on the bedroom floor in the dark, staring at scenes of chinese food on TV, I can't help but wonder about the day's passing-by, the business of tomorrow and goals yet to be achieved.

If you can see it, you can have it-- goes the maxim, oft mouthed...but acted upon??

Whatever your meat--chunky or minced for bites--it's gotta effect change, else why waste your time on earth?

Rambling, rumbling, stumbling, fumbling. Enough of limericks now.

I spy. I pry. I try. I cry.

Nigh high, mmhmmm.

Uh-huh.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Coco and Igor (2009)



Coming to town...

Photocubism

Canvas-size photo works by Thai film-maker, M.L. Mingmongkol Sonakul who says this when asked about her portrayal of nature:

"I love the outdoors, the sun, the moon, the sky, rain, river, water of any shape and form, etc. They are things that we can find in our daily life but often take for granted. It also works well with my concept of presenting it with the cubism method.

"That is to take things that the audience can easily associate with and make them see these things with other points of view, not as much as the abstract, but something that is easy for both eyes and brain to digest.
"


Drop 1


Drop 3

View more of her works here.

Check out the exhibition on 23 Apr at Objectifs.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Still Running



Ran 57min along East Coast this morning. Almost 9km perhaps? Aviva Tri was on. Nope, no desire to pick up a bike, although I am reading Mark Beaumont's autobiographical journey he made of 18,297 miles around the world in 81 days.

After u-turning at my halfway point in front of Macs, a fellow runner tapped me on the arm--I briefly wondered which friend I had bumped into--and told me to turn back before I overshot. Turns out this guy thought I was part of his running troupe. I muttered "On my own" and waved him off. And continue plodding I did.

I wonder if he had paced me till then. But I think it's really time to shed the solitude runs and join a serious running group into serious training. (Note to self: be careful what commitments you put in writing)

Over breakfast, was reading Erwin McManus on enjoying life the way God intended us to. Not in a careless pursuit of pleasures that consume us more than we consume them, but just to savour the journey and the company around. Admittedly work recently is draining more than driving me. Drucker told of how the worker in the modern corporation needs to see the big picture to find meaning in work.

Seriously need fresh inspiration, fresh methods and most of all, fresh pursuit of this year's goals. New music, new books, new movies, new sermons, new ideas... You know, the Hebrew word for new means new. Duh.

Alright, signing out. Here, check out this cool MV by Phoenix - Run Run Run.

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Progress



Change is not an event, it's a process

~ A.R. Bernard

Saturday, April 03, 2010

Rejoice and be glad



Courtesy of Pst Phil Pringle

Friday, April 02, 2010

Rend Collective Experiment

Just discovered this UK band, courtesy of Willy Joe. Cool sounds, great videos!

Wonder if I can ever write great songs of my own, to share with the world...

You Bled



Movements

Monday, March 29, 2010

Beautiful, just beautiful



He makes everything beautiful in its time...

Thursday, March 25, 2010

visualise

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Three Cups of Tea (2008)



Hear Bloomberg speak to Greg Mortenson about how he was led by life experiences to build schools in Afghanistan.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Thoughts Ahead, Behind

What do you do when a sense of ennui & lethargy creeps up on you?

Do you write? Do you pull out your vision card & 2010 goals? Do you Facebook mindlessly? Do you distract yourself with a lame & barely funny comedy on TV? Do you play that song you wrote 2 years ago & suddenly recall your goal to write a new one? Do you gather ideas for a new writing piece?

What do you do when you see your mom sporting rashes & she insists it's nothing even though it's been some time?

What do you do when you just want a friend to talk with?

What do you do when goosebumps goes a-tingling amidst a conversation?

What do you do when you think you already know what to do?

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Seeing & Believing



When I saw the man holding the Wimbledon trophy, I told myself that would be me one year from now. And I saw a picture of myself winning it. ~ Margaret Court, former World number one-ranked tennis player from Australia.

What does it take for a skinny, underprivileged girl to make it big to win 62 Grand Slam tennis titles? What more to take on a calling for ministry to help others find God and overcome challenges in life?

A life of winning, that's what we want.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

All Jazzed!!


Branford Marsalis Quarter performs "Jabberwocky"

Oeuvre: A work of art, literature, music, etc. The total output of a writer, painter, etc.

Passion: Boundless enthusiasm. An irrational but irresistible motive for a belief or action.

Jazz: Animation; Enthusiasm. Nonsense. Miscellaneous, unspecified things. To give great pleasure to. Excite.

Moral of the story: Be the best you can be.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Who or what occupies your sights...ears...heart?



Attended cousin's funeral wake last night. A cousin I've not seen since little, i.e. when a house seemed imposing enough to play hide&seek. An odd feeling indeed, yet family all the same.

Awoke today to ask myself where do I want to be in 10 years time? Shared this with a colleague during lunch and he told me about his poly friend who long decided to be a pastor and is now en route towards his dream. How admirable.

I thought about this and replied: There are some, like this friend, who knows and are focused what they want. Then there are others who change their minds midway. And then are others who may have an inkling but they certainly know what their strengths are. Of course, there are those who don't know and inevitably drift along.

So...where are your/my/our sights set towards?

Another thought occurred to me mid-morning: Leadership is Active. Received comment that got me wondering, is hyper-active leadership that delivers but causes high stress still good leadership?

So...what really matters at the end of the day?

I say, it's who's got your heart. Are you thinking Who I'm thinking of?

Been listening to this Starfield song - repeatedly. Love the lyrics and it touches me in a special way.

But you know, today I felt touched by Coldplay's Viva la Vida and Dion-Bocelli's The Prayer.

Ah, the power of music.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Who wants to save the earth?



Caught Al Gore's An Inconvenient Truth (2006) on DVD last night. Must say, it's stirred me up in an uncomfortable yet familiar way. He's got a book of the same title and a newer title, Our Choice (2009) which supposedly spells out a blueprint for tackling the climate crisis.

I went to bed with this thought, I don't want to go to bed every night with the perpetual smell of haze in the air. I also thought away switching from hardcopy books to e-books.

This morning, I chose not to buy my usual take-away tea a la styrofoam, health concerns on the back of my mind even as I type this.

Then I logged onto NYTimes which reported about car-makers's rising demand for lithium and the accompanying plants and mines to meet this demand - surely the word "mines" raises environmental alarm bells.

As I shared my newfound knowledge in barely hidden We-Must-Save-Mother-Gaia undertones with colleagues over lunch, one wondered aloud, "Going paperless but building more computers and servers, or building solar panels which in turn require energy to produce... Are these things really helping the situation?"

Another manager nodded and echoed, "Are we throwing the problem around?" My mind conjured up images of slash-and-burn deforestation but I didn't reply.

Alright, enough lunchtime blogging for now. Back to my paperful desk.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Be Thou my all



Be Thou my vision, oh Lord of my heart
Naught be all else to me, save that Thou art
Thou my best thought by day or by night
Waking or sleeping, Thy presence my light

Be Thou my wisdom, and Thou my true word
I ever with Thee and Thou with me Lord
Thou my great Father and I Thy true son
Thou in me dwelling and I with Thee one

Riches I need not, nor man's empty praise
Thou mine inheritance now and always
Thou and Thou only first in my heart
High king of heaven my treasure Thou art

Be Thou my vision, oh Lord of my heart
Nought be all else to me, save that Thou art
Thou my best thought by day or by night
Waking or sleeping, Thy presence my light

High king of heaven, my victory won
May I reach heaven's joy, bright heaven sun
Heart of my own heart, whatever befall
Still be my vision, oh ruler of all


(Ancient Irish hymn, possibly from the 8th Century, tr. by Mary E. Byrne)

Thursday, January 07, 2010

不能沒有你